Liberalisation and economic opening of China
Deng Xiaoping takes over after Mao Zedong's death (1976). After the death of Mao Zedong in 1976, Deng Xiaoping took over the reins of power in China in 1978. He conducted economic reforms resulting in the release of private initiative and a significant opening of the economy (foreign investment, export development), while maintaining an authoritarian political system. In a few decades, China went from being a planned and virtually self-sufficient economy to a market economy open to world markets. The country built up external surpluses and entered into a catching-up process with high growth rates.